We hold this policy as a liberating structure and expect leaders to use these boundaries to bring more awareness, truth, and love, rather than to avoid or repress sexual energy or attraction.
Therefore, it is critical that leaders understand the underlying intention of this policy: it is about connection, and requires inquiry at every step. It is about revealing deeper truth. It is not about putting a fence around sexuality or embodied explorations of those energies.
There is also explicit room for the policy to update, using the advice process.
If any leader does not feel a connection to the underlying purpose, spirit, and potential for greater embodiment and leadership in this policy, they are expected not to lead under the CE brand. If they understand the spirit but do not agree with the policy, they are expected to evolve it before leading, using the advice process. This structure is also open to evolution, a powerful boundary that will continue to update along with us and our society.
On budgeting for the time:
We don’t want to circle leaders on all their desires to act on attractions. Yet if they feel seriously about acting on it and have already been in a personal process with it… then we want to support that. Additional considerations in the personal process: are the leader and participant really meeting as equals in an event? What could be the possible implications for the participant?How much consideration has been given to the truth of the ecosystemic ripples?
Use your common sense and it’ll be relatively rare.
Acknowledging the mitigation of risk:
Risk itself is not just “risk,” it’s an expression of our being greater tuned in to the culture and more awareness of the impact our individual actions have on our team and the practice itself—that a full integrity of our leading includes care for the practice itself and ask how it wants and needs to be expressed. It’s also recognizing that there are almost always more powerful ways to work with that very same sexual energy and attraction that have less negative side effects.
More on the intention:
We hope this will hold leaders to an increasing rigor with respect to acting out their pain, eroticized wounds, hiding their deeper self behind blind submission and/or deferring responsibility to rules (which is often an ‘acting in’ instead of an ‘acting out’) or using sexual energies to get other needs met; while holding and seeing the innocence that drives these energies as well.
While at the same time allowing for the beauty and expression of sexual energy and attraction, and seeing that in the extreme prohibition leads to abuse—these parts of our Being beg for expression and when not given a healthy outlet, they’ll find a more nefarious, less conscious way to be lived and known. The willingness to feel and admit these things is a huge part of the transformative power of Circling. And because sex is unique in our Western/European culture (at minimum), it holds a lot of potential transformative power when skillfully worked with. Finally since we cannot protect anyone from all dangers (and attempts to do so usually backfire, as classic and contemporary myths like Sleeping Beauty and Disney’s film Frozen show so masterfully), our best effort is to nurture the inner resources, strengths, and capacities that each human already has.